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Doncaster Features: Timothy Goorkrodger: I Goa to Doncaster Races. Part 1
I GOA TO DONCASTER RACES, AND GET MOBBED AND ROBBED, TRYING TO PUT WRANG REIGHT
From the 4th edition of Timothy Goorkrodge's Oops and Doons and Sayins and Doin's of Timothy Goorkrodger (1870).
I like a horse; I think he's a noble animal; I consider he's got mair sense than mony a man, if he hasna onny soul! I know a bit aboot a horse, for I's Yorkshire. I know his good points and bad uns; and the blood and pedigree of mony a famus racer bred in the North. I once had a chestnut mare from Cleveland I'd not have taen twea hundred guineas for. She wur a canny, bonny thing; but I wur better off in those days. I donna like to see dumb critturs ill-treated; or poor miserable hacks with thur baanes hawf through thur skin, draggin' loads aboon the lahtle strength old age and disease has left 'em.
A man who flogs a willin' horse (and you can mak' most of 'em willin' with fair treatment) deserves to be flogged hissen. If I'd the makkin' of Acts of Parl'ment, I'd mak' that one be sure, I would! A good servant, be he man or horse, who has gi'en his best days to hard work, and to bring grist to oor mill, should have tender handlin' in his old age. I think it's a sin to see, as you often do, poor old horses and poor old men a-workin' day work, when past work. Gie 'em some light job if you like, to keep 'em healthy, but donna serve 'em like the Parish serves poor Flushdyke. He's been a decent, sober mon all his life, and brought oop ten bairns, and they've gaen all over the world mostly, and monny of 'em dead, no doubt. They wur all sent to work, as they do everywhur. [They're good at alterin' this noo, and thank God for it! Overwork in young days has taen life and whoap and spirit oot of millions of poor folks' bairns.] - mair's the pity - soon as they could walk almost - bird shooin' and staane pickin', and had no kind of eddicashun, or they mud have got ot, and helped thur poor eyther. Flushdyke had a pund and a new pair of breeches gien him onst, with a grand speech from a grand chap of a Lord, on his vartue and sober, usefool life, and cheers came all around from landlords and squeers, and farmers of the Soceaty; but he's seventy-six noo, and breakin' flint staanes all day long, wet poor grey hairs and honest, sunburnt face askin' pity of every passer-by. I say, and I'd oophold it afore Queen, and Lords, and Parl'ment, that's a shame and a disgrace!
Sike men as Flushdyke have made England what she is; and in old age are we to treat 'em worse than squeer's dogs, who've a warm, sheltered kennel, and good food, and waitin' on, and care? All along oor public roads, in the worst of weather, you can see poor old fellers staane breakin'; and young chaps of labourers meetin' 'em every hawf hour, like mile staanes, on the way to the Basteel. "Nea Makkin's how sober, how indoostrious, how steady, how frugal you may be, to this you mun coom at last!" What wonder oor young country fellers grow careless like, wi'oot whoape in this life, with this fate afoor 'em! Even pagans respect old age and gray hairs!
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Timothy Goorkrodger was a pseudonym of Francis Morgan
Fetherston (1822-1885?), an author of verse and misc. prose, much of it in periodicals; guidebooks; translations from Italian. He was born in London but lived in many places throughout the U.K. and in France.
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